Articles Posted in US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

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The Eleventh Circuit affirmed defendant's conviction for unlawful procurement of naturalization because he concealed from immigration authorities his past as a guard at a Serbian prison camp. The court held that the district court did not err when it prevented defendant from presenting hearsay statements of foreign witnesses who were unavailable to testify at trial; defendant failed to demonstrate that his constitutional right to present a complete defense was violated under Chambers v. Mississippi, 410 U.S. 284 (1973); assuming arguendo that the Geneva Convention could be judicially noticed, the district court did not err in determining that its probative value was substantially outweighed by the possibility of confusing the issues and potentially misleading the jury; and the district court did not violate defendant's rights under Chambers when it declined to take judicial notice. View "United States v. Mitrovic" on Justia Law

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The Eleventh Circuit granted respondents' motion to dismiss this appeal as moot and vacated the prior published opinion. In this case, petitioner was removed from the United States and was no longer detained in immigration custody. Both sides agree that the appeal has become moot. View "Sopo v. U.S. Attorney General" on Justia Law

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The Eleventh Circuit held that substantial evidence supported the BIA's decision that petitioner had not suffered past persecution by the Cameroonian police and that he lacked a well-founded fear of future persecution. The court held that the BIA was entitled to find that any mistreatment petitioner suffered did not rise to the level of persecution, to find that the police investigated his mistreatment, and to rely on country reports published by the State Department stating that conditions in Cameroon were improving for gay individuals. Finally, petitioner was not denied due process. Accordingly, the court denied his petition for review. View "Sama v. U.S. Attorney General" on Justia Law

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The Eleventh Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's decision affirming the IJ's order of removal based on his five criminal convictions for drug offenses under Florida Statute 893.13. The court held that the BIA did not err in concluding that petitioner was ineligible for cancellation of removal because his Florida conviction for sale of cocaine, in violation of Fla. Stat. 893.13(1)(a)(1), constituted "illicit trafficking" within the meaning of 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(43)(B). View "Choizilme v. U.S. Attorney General" on Justia Law

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The Eleventh Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's decision affirming the IJ's order of removal based on his five criminal convictions for drug offenses under Florida Statute 893.13. The court held that the BIA did not err in concluding that petitioner was ineligible for cancellation of removal because his Florida conviction for sale of cocaine, in violation of Fla. Stat. 893.13(1)(a)(1), constituted "illicit trafficking" within the meaning of 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(43)(B). View "Choizilme v. U.S. Attorney General" on Justia Law

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The Eleventh Circuit granted the petition for review of the BIA's denial of cancellation of removal. In this case, petitioner satisfied the third requirement of eligibility for cancellation of removal where the Florida statute under which petitioner had been convicted, trafficking in cocaine, was neither divisible nor had a categorical match in the Controlled Substance Act (CSA). Therefore, the court vacated the BIA's decision and remanded for further proceedings. View "Francisco v. U.S. Attorney General" on Justia Law

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The Eleventh Circuit granted a petition for panel rehearing, withdrew the previous published opinion, and substituted this opinion. The court denied the petition for review of the BIA's order affirming petitioner's removal from the United States. The court held that 8 U.S.C. 1432(a) did not discriminate based on gender where, had the situation been reversed, if petitioner's mother had become a lawful permanent resident, was naturalized, and raised him in the United States while his father remained in Jamaica, he still would not have derived citizenship because his parents never legally separated. The court also held that section 1432(a) did not unconstitutionally discriminate based on legitimacy and, in the alternative, assuming without deciding that section 1432(a)(3)'s distinction based on marital choice was a legitimacy based classification, the statute passed constitutional muster. The court agreed with its sister circuits that section 1432(a) was substantially related to protecting parental rights. Finally, section 1432(a) did not unconstitutionally burden petitioner's fundamental right to maintain a family unit. View "Levy v. U.S. Attorney General" on Justia Law

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The Eleventh Circuit granted a petition for panel rehearing, withdrew the previous published opinion, and substituted this opinion. The court denied the petition for review of the BIA's order affirming petitioner's removal from the United States. The court held that 8 U.S.C. 1432(a) did not discriminate based on gender where, had the situation been reversed, if petitioner's mother had become a lawful permanent resident, was naturalized, and raised him in the United States while his father remained in Jamaica, he still would not have derived citizenship because his parents never legally separated. The court also held that section 1432(a) did not unconstitutionally discriminate based on legitimacy and, in the alternative, assuming without deciding that section 1432(a)(3)'s distinction based on marital choice was a legitimacy based classification, the statute passed constitutional muster. The court agreed with its sister circuits that section 1432(a) was substantially related to protecting parental rights. Finally, section 1432(a) did not unconstitutionally burden petitioner's fundamental right to maintain a family unit. View "Levy v. U.S. Attorney General" on Justia Law

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The Eleventh Circuit granted a petition for review of the BIA's decision denying petitioner's application for cancellation of removal and ordering removal. The court held that petitioner's narcotics conviction did not disqualify her from cancellation of removal, because the Florida statute under which she was convicted did not qualify as an aggravated felony where it was indivisible and categorically overbroad. The court remanded for the BIA to reconsider petitioner's application. View "Cintron v. U.S. Attorney General" on Justia Law

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Petitioner sought review of the BIA's decision denying his motion to reopen removal proceedings. The DC Circuit dismissed in part and denied in part, holding that petitioner's constitutional claims challenging the order of removal itself and those addressing the sufficiency of the IJ's order denying the instant motion were not properly exhausted in immigration proceedings or were otherwise not properly before the court. In regard to petitioner's remaining claims challenging the BIA's decision, the court could not say that the BIA abused its discretion or that its opinion lacked reasoned consideration when it denied petitioner's motion to reopen. View "Bing Quan Lin v. U.S. Attorney General" on Justia Law